Maxine Lou Jaeckel
November 5, 1924 – September 14, 2021
Maxine Lou Jaeckel, age 96, of Portland, Oregon passed away on Tuesday, September 14, 2021. Maxine was born November 5, 1924.
From her son, Gary: The day after my mom passed I spent the morning sitting outside with my mind flooded with so many memories. There was a little breeze coming from the north and the water was rolling a bit with the incoming tide that was gently raising our home. I started thinking that mom was a bit like that morning tide. She probably would not acknowledge this but she was always there raising us up in so many ways.
I am not sure what year Grandma, mom and Darlene left South Dakota for Portland but I believe mom was about 10-12 years old. Grandpa made his way here hobo style hopping freight trains, got a job in a saw mill and sent money back for the rest of the family to come by train. I know mom looked after Darlene on that trip and helped take care of her as they both grew up. Mom never wanted anyone to know this but I am going to spill the beans now. She attended Commerce High School which is now Cleveland. Her senior year she dropped out to get a job at a five and dime to help support her family so she actually never graduated.
In 1943 she married my dad and during the war she worked in the office of the Kaiser Ship yards along with my dad, my grandpa Jaeckel and my uncle. By the end of the war the yard laid a keel and launched a ship every week. The new wheel chair I ordered for mom took 10 weeks and never made it in time. I truly believe they were the greatest generation.
My sister Judy came along next and during those early years my mom and dad had many adventures. They took a motor home they built on a cross country trip to the east coast, they bought and lived on a 104’ ex-navy vessel, they helped with the relief efforts for the Vanport flood and, my mom putting her foot down, they did not sail off to Columbia. Instead mom convinced my dad to buy a home here in Portland. Shortly thereafter I came along.
Mom was a stay at home mom raising my sister and me and looking after dad as well as our grandparents. She was a Girl Scout troop leader for Judy and with her good friend M.E they volunteered to be my Cub Scout Den mothers. We always spent our summers on camping trips, first with tents then a variety of trailers and motor homes. We explored almost every corner of Oregon. When Judy was done living in NY and could not afford to come home we made one last big family trip with their motor home to bring her home.
My grandmother (mom’s mom) experienced a massive stroke. Without hesitation my mom and dad invited her to move into our new home in Milwaukie. Dad and I set out to build another bedroom and mom helped take care of her for around 10 years until she passed. During those years mom also took care of Judy while in college , me as a teenager and held down a full time job as a bookkeeper at Cinderella realty to help pay for Judy’s college expenses. She worked there and did not retire until Tanner went to pre-school where she stepped in again to help take care of Tanner while Jeanine went back to part time work. Tanner and mom had a chance to form a special bond where they had tea parties, played soccer and taught Tanner how to bake apple pie.
My dad’s bout with cancer was hard on us all but mom was our anchor keeping my dad’s spirits up and was there with him in our home, holding his hand when he passed. Her example showed me how to be brave during trying times.
A year after dad died mom could not sit still and started volunteering at the Providence Milwaukie Hospital volunteering over 5000 hours of service. During that time she also took my sister in and helped her manage her ailing health.
Looking back the other morning as the tide slowly rolled in raising our home almost unperceptively, I realized my mom also silently slipped in and cared for of us in so many more ways than I have mentioned here. Mom never considered herself as a care giver but she just always seemed to silently do the right thing to help raise us during both the good and the challenging times. Her example with her actions has helped me through some trying times and as Tanner now enters into his Nursing career I believe her example will help guide him as well.
I will think of you every day mom and your loving example of how to live a long and happy life will be with me to my days end. Gary Jaeckel
Saturday, September 25, 2021
Maxine Lou Jaeckel
September 20, 2021
Your mom was such a wonderful caregiver Gary to you and I in our toddler years taking care of us in the old neighborhood allowing us to play outside in never ending volleys of ball games, hide and seek and even later on during snow days and so much more. She was a light in the world and a wonderful human being not to mention she always provided great snacks. I will remember her smile forever
September 19, 2021
Maxine was a member of our YLI group for many years. Before she moved I would always see her at church and she was a dear friend of mine along with Betty Brannen. I always got to call her for our Prayer Chain and we visited often. Miss you Maxine
Pat (Patty Henderson) Averill
September 19, 2021
Your mom was a wonderful Girl Scout leader who worked together with my mom, Laura Henderson. They provided so many fun opportunities for us, and your mom always did it with grace. Judy and I both felt lucky!
As an adult I learned she worked for my cousins and realized what a small world it is. They held her in high esteem!
Please accept my sincere sympathy…your mom was a lovely person and I’m grateful to have had her in my life.